And holy days.
Any reason to celebrate; especially to celebrate an aspect of God’s character. What better season than Easter to reflect on what a very incredible act God performed for us. He sent His only son to die for our sins so we don’t have to.
But how can those of us with children in our lives–moms, grandmas, aunts, teachers, even doting neighbors–make the story of Christ’s death and resurrection come alive for kids?
Here is one fabulous, hands-on activity we have done for nearly the past 18 years both with our offspring as well as neighborhood kids and cousins too. It is simple and utilizes items you probably already have around your house right now.
While serving as co-editors of a newsletter for at-home moms in the late ’90s, a reader mailed in this moving idea to my college friend Kelly and me. The process of making these “Resurrection Cookies” and retelling the Gospel story will make a lasting impression. Designed to make the biblical account come alive, be sure to begin this recipe on Saturday night, right before Easter morning.
1 cup whole pecans
1 teaspoon white vinegar
3 large egg whites
Pinch of salt
1 cup of white sugar
Plastic bag with a zip closure
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Place the pecans in the bag and close. Read John 19:1-3. Let the children take on the role of the Roman soldiers using the wooden spoon to beat the bag of whole pecans, breaking them into very small pieces while shouting, “Hail Jesus! King of the Jews!”
Next, read John 19:28-30. When Jesus became thirsty He was given vinegar to drink. Have the kids smell the vinegar. Place it in a large mixing bowl.
Add the egg whites to the bowl. Eggs represent new life. Jesus willingly gave up His life to bring new life to us. Read John 10:10.
Read Luke 23:26-27. Give each child a tiny pinch of salt. Let them taste some and then brush the rest into the bowl. This represents the salty tears Jesus’ followers shed.
The ingredients so far aren’t very appealing. Egg whites are bland, vinegar is sour and the salt isn’t good by itself. Now comes the sweet part of the story! Jesus died because of His love for us! Dump in one cup of sugar as you read Psalm 34:8 and John 3:16.
Beat with a mixer on high speed for 12-15 minutes until stiff peaks are formed. The whiteness represents the purity of those who have been cleansed from sin. Read Isaiah 1:18.
Gently fold in the pecans. Drop heaping teaspoons of the batter onto a cookie sheet lined with wax paper. Read Matthew 27:57-60. Each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus’ body was laid.
Read Matthew 27:62-66. Jesus tomb was sealed tightly shut. Place the cookies into the oven, close the door and turn off the oven. Give each child a piece of masking tape and have them help seal the oven shut.
Now it’s bedtime. Your children may feel sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight, just as Jesus’ followers were sorrowful when the tomb was sealed shut. While tucking the kids in, read John 16:20-22.
On Easter morning, open the oven and sample the cookies. Notice the cracked surface. Take a bite. The cookies are hollow! On the first Easter morning, the disciples were amazed to find the tomb open and empty. Read Matthew 28:1-10.
Finish with prayer, thanking God for His incredible plan of salvation.
He is alive!